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A picture of a Turkey Berry

Turkey Berry

Canthium inerme

Also known as

Common Turkey-Berry, Criss-Cross Turkey-Berry, Cape Date, Gewone Bokdrol, Bokdrolbessie, Doringels (Afr.), Muvhibvela-Shadani, Mmutswa-O-Sepela, Umvuthwamini (Xhosa, Zulu), Umnyushulube (Xhosa), Isitobe (Zulu), Mvutwamira (Sw), Mmutswa-O-Sepela (Northern Sotho), Muvhibvela-Shadani (Venda)

Full Sun
Easy care
Moderate watering


USDA zone


Minimum temperature

Expected size








3 years to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has a mild fragrance

More images of Turkey Berry

Bark on an older tree
Right angled branches and leaves

Turkey Berry Overview

With its beautiful rounded evergreen canopy and enjoyable fruit, the Turkey berry is an ornamental tree which makes a great addition to almost any garden in Southern Africa. This tree is not only ornamental and edible, but also used in traditional medicinal applications and is known for it wood which is used in making wagons and furniture. This plant will attract a wide range of insects and birds to your garden, so plant one and enjoy! ZA Distribution: Eastern Cape, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, North West, Western Cape.

Common problems with Turkey Berry

Generally pest free. Diseases include Capnodium and leaf mould (Meliola woodiana).

    Turkey Berry Companion Plants

    Under-plant with shade loving plants that have a low water requirement.

    How to harvest Turkey Berry

    When harvesting seeds, seeds should be collected when ripe and cleaning of these is recommended prior to sowing.

    How to propagate Turkey Berry


    Sowing is done in trays or seed beds in a rich, well-drained medium, with equal parts of sand and compost. Germination times vary, depending on the time of year, from under a month to up to 2-3 months.

    Special features of Turkey Berry

    Attracts useful insects

    Insects include bees and the Natal Barred Blue butterfly.

    Attracts birds

    It attract numerous fruit-eating and insectivorous birds. Birds play an important role in the dispersal of the plants seeds.

    Hedge plant

    It can serve as a possible security hedge and can also be pruned into a formal hedge.

    Drought resistant

    Drought tolerant once well established, often grows along coastal line.

    Other uses of Turkey Berry


    The leaves are used in the treatment of stomach ailments.


    The fruits are eaten by people.

    Other uses



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